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Sneaking Into Beirut

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"Now, it is true that Israel's counteroffensive has taken the lives of several hundred Lebanese civilians (many entirely innocent, others who sheltered Hezbollah rockets) and displaced perhaps half a million more. Every innocent death is a tragedy.

"But the brutal fact is that civilian deaths are Hezbollah's strongest weapon. As Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah, once said: 'We have discovered how to hit the Jews where they are the most vulnerable. The Jews love life, so that is what we shall take away from them. We are going to win because they love life and we love death.'"

Many people would love to see a cease-fire, but others would not, among them Weekly Standard Editor Bill Kristol (who, while disagreeing with the likes of George Will, approvingly cites a Washington Post editorial):

"Israel is fighting to stop, and defeat, Hezbollah. Bush, Blair, and the Post editors understand that the right policy is to stand behind Israel, and to support that nation in defeating terror--for its own sake, and on behalf of liberal civilization. They understand that we are at war with an axis of jihadist-terrorist organizations and the states that sponsor them. They understand that we need to win the war. With Bush's leadership, we have a good chance to do so."

In case you missed this WashPost piece about a fascinating scientific experiment...

"There was only one thing on which pro-Israeli and pro-Arab audiences agreed. Both were certain that media coverage in the United States was hopelessly biased in favor of the other side.

"In one especially telling experiment, researchers showed 144 observers six television news segments about Israel's 1982 war with Lebanon. Pro-Arab viewers heard 42 references that painted Israel in a positive light and 26 references that painted Israel unfavorably. Pro-Israeli viewers, who watched the very same clips, spotted 16 references that painted Israel positively and 57 references that painted Israel negatively. Both groups were certain they were right and that the other side didn't know what it was talking about."

Let's check in on some war blogging. In Tel Aviv, Lisa Goldman posts a picture of Israeli girls (maybe 7 or 8 years old) signing missiles that are bound for Lebanon:

"The image above caused a huge storm of outrage in the Arab blogosphere. Huge. You wouldn't believe how huge. The widely-read Gulf-based Palestinian blogger who was the first to post it received so much traffic that he had to move the photo to another server. Many others, including several I know personally, posted it and expressed their disgust. Israeli children taught to hate! Lebanese children are dying and they're happy! They're no better than . . . (fill in the blank, I don't want to go there)."

Goldman offers an explanation, but it still sounds troubling to me.

A blogger in Lebanon, Bassem Malzoum , is angry about having to evacuate:

"I don't know what to say anymore. I mean, how am I supporting Hizbullah. Here you have personal proof people that I had to leave my own country because a friend of ours was killed the other day. Why? Because he was loading WOOD from his truck into his farm and probably some crazy spy plane caught view of this and figured 'hey, .he shouldn't be out past curfew, and those 4x10's look pretty suspicious to me,. let's do something about it.' I mean how ridiculous is that? And the sad thing is he used to tell all the people in the village to go to his farm out in the middle of nowhere because Israel would never EVER fire there unless it was intentional.


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